100 Ideas for a Fall Family Festival


Pack your next carnival with these outrageously fun ideas from children’s ministry leaders–just like you.

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Treasure Box-Kids dig for prizes in a sand-filled aquarium. (William Pesata)

Gospel Sing-Have a talent show on a flatbed truck. (WP)

Door Prizes-As they enter, participants get tickets for a drawing held later. (WP)

Jonah and the Big Fish-Decorate a refrigerator box to look like a big fish. Hang moss on the top inside of the box. Use a red light inside and have “Jonah” tell his story. (WP)

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Candy Grab-Kids get one chance to grab all the candy they can out of a bucket. (WP)

Swirl Painting-Kids make art designs from a swirl painting kit-available at toy stores. (WP)

Nurse’s Station-Children get their pulse rate, weight, and height done by a uniformed nurse. (Loretta Bueckert)

Computer Printout-Kids get printouts with their name and its meaning (taken from baby name books). (LB)

Karaoke Singing-Have an adult play the piano. Kids sing their choice of song on a little stage, complete with a microphone. (LB) 

Nail Painting-Older girls paint kids’ nails. (LB)

Treasure Dig-Kids dig around in a kiddie pool filled with plastic foam packing peanuts and small toys. (Amy Brown)

Family Photo Booth-Families pose for instant-print photos. Then place photos in kid-decorated frames. (Cathy Gould)

Live Reformers-Costumed Martin Luther, John Calvin, or John Knox give brief presentations about what happened in their lifetimes. (CG) 

Bean the Philistine-Kids sling small beanbags at a life-size plywood cutout of Goliath. (Marilyn Marsh) 

Pin the Thesis-Have “Martin Luther” talk with children before blindfolding and spinning each one. Then each child tapes a pre-printed “thesis” to a door. (Diane Ritchie) 

Ring It-Children toss embroidery hoops over empty two-liter bottles arranged similar to bowling pins on the floor. (DR)

Ring It Again-Kids toss hoops at prizes set up on tables or boxes. Prizes include bubbles, soft drinks, and small toys. (DR)

Muffin Pan Toss-Kids toss 10 pennies into a muffin tin with numbered holes; pieces of felt in the bottom of the tin keep pennies from bouncing out. (Sandra Klinsing) 

The Mummy Wrap-One player is the “wrapper,” the other is the “wrappee.” Racing against time, the wrapper wraps the wrappee with an entire roll of toilet paper. (Ellynne Wiebe)

The Carpenter’s Crew-Each player is given a hammer and a board with three already started nails. On go, the carpenter is given 30 seconds to hammer as many nails as possible. (EW) 

This Little Light of Mine-Each player receives two filled squirt guns. Standing 3 feet away from three lit candles, kids try to extinguish the candles before running out of water. (EW) 

Knock It Off-Kids use water guns to knock pingpong balls off tops of soft drink bottles.

Blow and Go Race-Four children race on the floor using party blowers to blow pingpong balls to a finish line. (Karen Claunch)

Pingpong Blow-Teams of three compete to blow pingpong balls to the other end of a table, using drinking straws. 

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